Life at Eclipse

Musings on the Eclipse Foundation, the community and the ecosystem

Community Review of the Eclipse Public License

The Eclipse Public License, and its predecessor the Common Public License have been in existence for around 12 years now. A lot has changed since the EPL’s introduction in 2004, and the time has come for a review to ensure it remains current. As a result, we are going to kick off a public process to solicit input on the license, and discuss possible revisions. Once we’ve arrived at a set of revisions which have a broad support, the Eclipse Foundation Board of Directors would have to unanimously approve the new version. And, of course, any revisions would be submitted to the Open Source Initiative to have them certified as compliant with the Open Source Definition.

I don’t want to steer the conversation in any particular direction, but as a sampler of issues, here are a couple:

  1. The distinction drawn between object code and source code aren’t really helpful when you’re talking about scripting languages like JavaScript.
  2. The use of the term “module” is confusing to some.

There are a few things that we already know we don’t want to change. First and foremost is that the EPL will remain a copyleft license. Another is that we want to continue to enable a commercially-licensed ecosystem based on Eclipse technologies.

We are going to be starting these discussions soon on the epl-discuss@eclipse.org mailing list (subscribe here), and will be tracking individual issues in the Eclipse Foundation/Community/License component in the Eclipse bugzilla.

If you are interested in the future of Eclipse licensing, please join in the conversation!

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Written by Mike Milinkovich

May 31, 2013 at 11:37 am

Posted in Foundation, Open Source

2 Responses

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  1. Looking forward to it!

    Jim Wright

    May 31, 2013 at 4:34 pm

  2. Easy: JavaScript is object code when it was created by Emscripten from C or similar, but it is source code when it is hand written. :)

    mihi42

    June 17, 2013 at 4:02 pm


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